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KDF sets demonstration farms to boost horticulture in Somalia

By Staff reporter , Garowe Online

KISMAYO, Somalia  - In a bid to help in the realization of Somalia's development on the agricultural field, the Kenya Defense Forces [KDF] soldiers serving under the African Union Mission in Somalia [Amisom] set up demonstration farms to enhance their sharing of horticultural knowledge with the locals especially youth and women

Somalia, which has been struggling with instability due to the resurgence of Al-Shabaab militants, is largely an arid land where agriculture is barely practiced. But the presence of River Jubba and Shebelle makes it easier for residents to carry on with farming.

And the KDF took the demonstration farms at Dhobley Forward Operating Base in Jubaland State which continues to attract admiration from the residents of the town for it boosts their agribusiness skills. The farm bears an assortment of crops that includes onions, watermelons, tomatoes, kales among others.

Additionally, the soldiers have also set up another demonstration farm on brick making as a way of making affordable decent housing, an initiative lauded by Brigadier Paul Njema, the Sector II Commander, who took over in February.

"Part of the Amisom mandate is to ensure harmony and progress amongst the communities within which we operate. As Amisom and KDF in particular, we are privileged to work closely with not just the Somali Security Forces [SSF[ but also the local authorities and the local communities primarily in the pursuit of peace and security; and furthermore in enhancing development initiatives," he noted.

"As Amisom works towards gradual hand over of security responsibilities to the SSF we are determined to leave behind an economically empowered community," he said; adding that the empowerment of women is particularly is a key driver towards peace since they are the ones who bear the most brunt during conflicts.

Now operating under the Somali Transition Plan in which Amisom is set to hand over security responsibilities to the Somali Security Forces, KDF continues to work with Somali Security Forces and the local populace to hasten the pursuit of peace and stability in the country.

There are close to 3,500 KDF troops in Somalia mainly operating within Sectors II and VI of AMISOM. The team is set to withdraw from the Horn of Africa nation upon completion and full implementation of the Somali Transition Plan [STP] which is scheduled for December 2021.


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